1st human case of West Nile reported in Arizona this year

PHOENIX (AP) - The Maricopa County Department of Public Health has confirmed the first human case of West Nile virus in Arizona this season.

Health officials said Tuesday that the infected man is a Maricopa County resident in his late 50s with no travel history.

The unidentified victim experienced flu-like symptoms, but wasn't hospitalized and has since recovered.

Health officials say mosquito populations increase dramatically during periods of high rainfall and more cases are expected as the monsoon season progresses.

West Nile can cause severe illness in some people, especially the elderly.

Severe symptoms include high fever, headache, neck stiffness and-or encephalitis or inflammation of the brain, which can lead to paralysis or death.

There were 108 human cases of West Nile virus reported statewide last year. Ninety-three of those cases were in Maricopa County.

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